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Thursday, May 9, 2013

Walk of Life

Finishing construction of a house is not the end of a process, but rather the beginning. Meadow grass is growing across the former construction site, as are the wildflowers - Grass Widows, Shasta Lilies, May Flowers, and Love Darts - but the area between the front of the house and the gravel driveway is still mostly dirt. And when it rains, it's mostly mud. Time to build a walkway.

We'd talked for some time about using rock from our 66 acres for paving stones, and during the past five years we've collected them into piles at the bases of two large pine trees. We've also identified some areas near our top meadow where there are a lot of flat granite slabs.

So, last week, our good friend and neighbor, Dave, brought up his baby Bobcat and scraped down about 4-6 inches from the concrete front landing to the gravel road, piling the soil for use later in the process. During the next two days, I shoveled about a ton of gravel from the edges of our half-mile driveway into a large yard cart, and drove the yard cart up and down the driveway - maybe 20 trips - in a trailer hitched to my ATV.
5 Buckets and 8 Bags of Sand

5 Buckets and 43 Bags Later
Two years ago, after a hard spring flood had subsided, Karen had shoveled sand the flood had left behind near our spring into five 5-gallon buckets, which we'd tried - largely successfully to keep out of the rain during the home construction process. That was the first sand to go into the walkway hollow. Not nearly enough. Off to Home Depot. I figured eight 50-pound bags would be enough. Was I wrong. 43 bags and two additional trips to Home Depot later, there's just enough sand to provide a stable base for the rocks.

Next step: collecting and placing the rocks. Maybe tomorrow morning, when the day is cooler.

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